April 6, 2015

TrépanierBaer Presents Ryan Sluggett: Incessant Pinch

Opening Reception:
Friday, April 10, 2015
6:00 pm to 8:30 pm in the company of the artist

TrépanierBaer is thrilled to present Ryan Sluggett: Incessant Pinch, the premiere of a stunning new body of work. The exhibition will feature three large-scale paintings titled: Oyster Breath, Dream Chain and Primate Vision; a new video work titled Doorways; and 14 new mid-size works presented in a particular installation on two adjacent walls of the gallery.

When asked to comment on this new body of work, Sluggett has said the following:

We live in a sculpturally liberated world. As people, we don’t melt in and out of our surroundings the way figures in a Vuillard painting melt into their wallpapered interiors. My painting and video works engage in this ongoing philosophical negotiation between the figure and the ground. Incessant Pinch’ further complicates things through an installation that promotes cross-pollination among the paintings, videos and drawings.

Through the organization of structure in a picture, I am attempting to show something of the energy and complexity of the world we inhabit. As a viewer of art, my point of focus is inevitably shifting. It is when a painting or video has the uncanny ability to mirror these natural shifts, and lurch towards the viewer in fits and starts offering chunks of painterly considerations and possible sites for contemplation, then, like Frankenstein, I think art can start to feel truly alive.

In August of 2013 I sent Alexander Nagel a piece of my writing which asked the question “What to do now that ruptures of the pictorial surface are in effect flat to us?” and he used part of that sentence as the title of a short piece of writing he did for a catalogue of recent work for TrépanierBaer. Since then I’ve been trying to find out if this proclamation had as much truth in it as I thought at the time. In searching for an answer I made a material jump: in this new body of work I have wrapped a layer of clear vinyl over compositions collaged from many materials resulting in a flat surface to paint on. Then, fluid oil paint is the only material I have allowed myself to rely on in completing and unifying the image. The goal has been to make images that evoke the chaos of collage, while nestling into the nuances inherent in a world made entirely from paint.

Ryan Sluggett was born in 1981 in Calgary, Alberta. He received his BFA with Distinction in Painting from the Alberta College of Art + Design in 1999 and his MFA from the University of California, Los Angeles in 2008. His work has been exhibited throughout Canada, the US and parts of Europe including solo exhibitions at the Khyber Institute, Halifax; YYZ Gallery, Toronto; and group exhibitions at the Contemporary Art Gallery, Vancouver; and the Montréal Biennale in 2007.

Sluggett’s works were featured in a solo exhibition in Spain at ARCO Madrid in 2008. In 2012 his work was included in the Hammer Museum Biennial titled Made in LA. In September of 2014 his work was featured in the survey exhibition titled Made In Calgary: The 2000s at Glenbow Museum. Most recently his work was featured as a solo exhibition at the Armory Show in New York City.

Sluggett’s work is included in numerous public collections including the Booth Collection at the University of Chicago; the Hammer Museum, Los Angeles; the Vancouver Art Gallery; Glenbow Museum, Calgary; the Rubell Collection, Florida; the Alberta Foundation for the Arts Collection, Edmonton; and numerous private and corporate collections throughout Canada and the US.

Incessant Pinch is Ryan Sluggett’s 6th solo exhibition at TrépanierBaer Gallery. We look forward to seeing you!

Image Credit:
Oyster Breath, 2015

Oil on vinyl / 78″ x 60″